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The Ultimate Full-Body Workout in Just Four Physioball Exercises

June 20, 2011

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At first glance, a physioball might not seem like much of an exercise tool. It might even bring back childhood memories of bouncing a ball around the playground. But a physioball is no toy. In fact, it can provide a fast, intense workout for any athlete.

To make the most of your physioball workout, use the ball for functional bodyweight exercises while working your balance and stability. The exercises below will challenge your body in new ways and promote muscle growth.

Chest – Physioball Push-Up
With your hands on the ball shoulder-width apart, your back straight and your feet propped up on your toes, perform Push-Ups, keeping your core engaged. If it's your first time on the ball, your arms will shake wildly. Shorten the range of motion until you’re ready to go further. If you try to do more than you can handle, you’ll only get frustrated and want to quit. This exercise hits your chest, triceps, core and anterior deltoids. To increase the intensity on your core, raise one leg per set. Do three sets of 10-15 reps.

Legs [Glutes] – Glute Ham Raise
This is a great way to build strength and stability in one of the largest muscles in your body. With your feet on the ball shoulder-width apart and your shoulder blades flat on the ground, extend or push your hips toward the sky and squeeze your glutes. Keep the physioball as still as possible. Perform three sets of 10-15 reps.

Back – Back Extension
Get on your knees with the ball in front of your thighs. Lift your knees off the ground into Physioball Push-Up position, with the ball pressing against your abdomen. Allow your body to roll onto the ball with your arms hanging at your sides. Then, in a controlled manner, extend your back and squeeze your shoulder blades together with your palms up, like you’re trying to touch the ceiling. Repeat for 15-20 reps, three sets.

Shoulders – Pike Push-Up
This exercise requires powerful stability. Get into position slowly as the ball can easily slip out from under you. Face the ground with your toes on the ball and your hands on the ground underneath your shoulders. Extend your knees and engage your core to create a straight decline from your feet to your head. Roll the ball in toward your chest and perform a Push-Up in pike position (knees straight, body bent at waist). Lower your upper body until your head touches the ground; then push back up to start position. Feel free to place a pillow or soft blanket under your head for safety. Do 8-12 reps for three sets.

Photo:  careerfitness.com.au

Joe Baur
- Joe Baur is a certified personal trainer with a bachelor's degree in mass communication from Miami University [Oxford, OH]. He became certified with the National...
Joe Baur
- Joe Baur is a certified personal trainer with a bachelor's degree in mass communication from Miami University [Oxford, OH]. He became certified with the National...
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